Monday, September 24, 2012

Time for a Change

I feel a little apprehensive and more than a little lost. This week, I'm doing something I haven't done for a long time - too long, in fact!

I'm going to take the week off.

Not from work, but from the gym. From the treadmill. From classes, including my latest love affair: yoga.

Taking some time to rest and let your muscles and central nervous system (CNS) recover is very important for good health and muscle growth. However, all too often, we get caught up in the "do more, be intense, train hard!" mentality that we forget that rest and recovery time out of the gym is just as important as training time in the gym.

I can't remember the last time I took a week off from the gym. It certainly hasn't been in the past three years that I've been living in Maryland. I took a day or two off after my show earlier this summer, but other than that, I've been very consistent with my gym time and cardio.

But lately, I'm not so excited about going to the gym. I'm not actively trying to build any more muscle (which feels so weird), so my workouts are more plyo-based, less weights-based. I don't mind the training - I'm always up for something new and different - but I'm just not excited to go to the gym lately.

It's time for a change.

This week, I'm not going to the gym. At all. Not even to visit with my friends (sorry, Jenny; I'll miss you!).

I'm not sure what to do with all my spare time. Every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday (and sometimes Wednesday), I head straight to the gym after work. I usually get home anywhere from 8-9 pm. Now it feels like I have hours and hours of open time to do anything I want. I'm overwhelmed.

J suggested that I do zero cardio, but quite frankly, my morning cardio wakes me up. I feel more energized when I get to work and am more productive, so I decided to just cut way back on the intensity. This morning's cardio felt like a leisurely stroll through the park. Except by park, I mean treadmill in the guest room while Ed napped in the dog bed.

Cutest. Cat. Ever. He totally supports morning cardio.
Of course, with the decreased activity this week, I'm decreasing my calories a bit too. I don't need to eat quite as much to sustain my energy since my energy expenditure will be drastically less.

I'm going to try to save my money and not go shopping every night. I'll probably end up cleaning the house or organizing J's closet or something just as titillating.

Do you have any suggestions of activities for my (overwhelming amount of) spare time? Do you take time off from the gym? How many days/weeks do you take off?


  1. Well, you could start a healthy obsession with all the new TV shows premiering this season :) haha. A few of my favs are New Girl (on tonight), Modern Family and Up All Night. You could always pamper yourself a bit and do an at home mani/pedi (or splurge and get it done professionally). I personally take one day off per week and don't think I've taken off more than 2-3 days in the past year and a half. Do you usually go 7 days per week? Enjoy your time off!!! :)

  2. Whoa whoa whoaaaahhh.... what's goin on here!? Where the hell is Kari!!??

    I suggest you spend the time on whatever is your #2 passion. Do you have any projects you've been putting off due to lack of time?
    Enjoy your time off!!!

  3. Take a trip to the book store, browse for a really good book. I'd give a recommendation, but I'm too busy working out to read, haha. Maybe I'll take the week off too... ;)

  4. This is tough! I went through the same thing after my half ironman was over. It's a great time to pick up a new hobbie or do some reading.

    Don't worry, the weird feeling will go away sooner than you know it, and then you'll get into a new flow. Time has a way of filling itself up.

    Then you'll have to rehabitualize yourself into going to the gym!

  5. I don't know what to do when I get out of routine either. I don't know that it is so much the time, but the lack of routine that makes me crazy. Reading, coffee with friends, dreaming up big, fun things to do, or getting organized all make me happy. Have fun with your last few days! :D

  6. Sometimes that really is the best thing you can do! I took a few days off in august, i was feeling under the weather - didn't even WANT to workout (that's unique - i love the gym) and i was going to london.
    From saturday - thursday i only went to gym once, went on a 7 mile run and did a whole lot of walking in the city (like hours a day).

    Fridaynight back home i was PUMPED to get back in - hoping you will expierence the same thing!